Monday, February 16, 2009

Screen Vinyl Image Mesmerized Me...

...and blew me away with their live performance, this past Saturday night, at Pianos in downtown Manhattan. I only recently discovered this band. I knew I had to listen up when I saw Screen Vinyl Image was playing a gig with 2 of my favorite New York City bands, Audn and The Vandelles. Serendipitously, a friend sent me a preview of their new album, Interceptors, thinking of me when he heard it. He thought it would be my kind of music. Turns out he was spot on like nobody's business. I listened to the album and liked it straight away. When I listened to Screen Vinyl Image's earlier release, their 5 song EP called The Midnight Sun, I was even more impressed and a little stunned. These songs were from somewhere within the realm inhabited by artists such as Nine Inch Nails, A Place To Bury Strangers, Liars, and The December Sound. The songs come from a place, another world, where layers of synth and guitar distortion (from make-them-yourself pedals and equipment) form soundscapes that are deep and metallic. Each song pulses and brims with hypnotizing beats riding on waves of feedback coaxed out of evil guitars. Hollow, echoed, sometimes ghostly, sometimes whispered, vocals top Screen Vinyl Image's songs.

As I listened to the songs of Interceptors and The Midnight Sun, I got the idea that Screen Vinyl Image's live show would be exciting, and something different than what I had been experiencing from live music lately, which brings me to my review of their performance at Pianos, in New York City, on Valentine's Day, 2009. This gig was Screen Vinyl Image's New York album release party, and damn did they bring it on full force. With perfectly chosen wicked color schemes flashing on the screen behind them, the 3 members of Screen Vinyl Image, Jake, Kim, and Nathan, turned up the volume on the drums, keys, synths, and yeah, the guitar effects, to create a sonic escape to another planet for their entire set. They played What You Need, Asteroid Exile, Slipping Away, Fever, Decay (what a cover of a Ride song), The Midnight Sun, and closed the set with Cathode Ray. My hearing was now impaired, but wow, was it worth it.........waves of guitar effects, layers of smooth synthesizers, and pounding, industrial drums, roared under Jake's vocals, which could be the vocals of Ian Curtis's ghost............bloody amazing sonic assault. Definitely a must-see live band. And now, of course, their recordings mean all the more to me, as they haven't left the player since that night! They do indeed, worship the potentiometer.

Screen Vinyl Image on MySpace
Screen Vinyl Image is part of Safranin Sound. To find other artists who are keeping it real, keeping it creative, and keeping the THEIRS, visit Safranin Sound's website & learn more about them.

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